In a bid to tackle high levels of food waste and to redistribute food to those most in need, the environmental charity PECT is launching a community fridge project in Peterborough this October.
Two community fridges and a freezer are being installed at easily accessible locations across the city, to enable local residents in need to access free food – sourced from farms, cafes, stores and supermarkets – that would otherwise have gone to waste.
“Around £3 billion worth of food is wasted each year by the food industry,” explains PECT’s Communities Team Manager Karen Igho. “With this project we aim to supply local residents with surplus food to help ease deprivation, provide residents with access to nutritious ingredients, and to prevent food waste.”
Any member of the public can access the community hubs and their fridges to gain access to the excess or surplus food, which is collected and distributed by the new food waste community interest group Food for Nought. The aim is for the project to cut down on food waste and help ease pressure on residents who are struggling to afford to feed themselves and their families.
The first fridge will be located in WestRaven Community Café (Hampton Court, Westwood PE3 7LD), and there will be an official opening on Monday 30th October, at 10am. The final fridge and freezer will open in Gladstone Community Hub and one other location (to be confirmed) in the coming few weeks.
PECT was chosen to be a Sainsbury’s ‘Discovery Community’ as part of the supermarket’s ‘Waste Less, Save More’ campaign. The environmental charity has received funds to carry out a variety of activities across the city to tackle food waste.
‘Waste Less, Save More’ was launched by Sainsbury’s in 2015 to help combat the growing issue of food waste. Following a 12-month trial in Derbyshire, the retailer has unveiled a further £1 million investment to support 147 UK-wide projects – which includes this one in Peterborough.
The city has a strong network of organisations with the expertise, knowledge and passion to support food waste projects. ‘Waste Less, Save More’ brings PECT together in partnership with Cross Keys Homes, FoodCycle, Peterborough City Council, Public Health’s Healthy Schools programme and schools across the city.